Meeting – Discussion with Ambassador Dr. Halina Kobeckaitė

30 March 2023, the Lithuanian Ambassadors’ Club organised a meeting-discussion with Ambassador Dr. Halina Kobeckaitė. During the event, she presented two of her books: “In the Footsteps of Karaim History” and “At the Origins of Lithuanian National Politics 1988-1994”.

The speaker noted that the book “In the Footsteps of Karaim History” is a collection of 80 articles gathered over a ten-year period. When the Seimas of the Republic of Lithuania proclaimed 2022 as the Year of the Karaites of Lithuania, it was decided to publish the book. The Karaims arrived in Lithuania more than 600 years ago, and their largest community is currently in Trakai. According to the Ambassador, the biggest challenge now is to preserve the native Karaim language. Karaim is not spoken in everyday life, and only about 30 people in Lithuania can speak Karaim. There must be at least some written sources proving the existence of the Karaim language if there are no living speakers left. That is why various manuscripts and poetry are currently being translated. Ms. H. Kobeckaite was delighted that a German publishing house had asked her to translate Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s novel “The Little Prince” into the Karaim language. 

“At the Origins of Lithuanian National Politics 1988-1994″ is a three-year work that brings together all the Ambassador’s documented recollections, events, and conferences. The primary aim of this book was to show the challenges the Department of National Minorities had to face at the beginning of its establishment, the conditions under which it had to work, and what the Department of National Minorities is doing now. The founding principle of the Department is that the culture of national minorities is part of Lithuanian culture. Dr. Vida Montvydaitė, Director of the Department of National Minorities, spoke at this part of the event.

The live and remote event was very popular with more than 40 participants.

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